PHUKET: A pineapple trading center was opened in Phuket recently in a move aimed at centralizing provincial supply of the fruit, and thus increasing its market penetration potential across Southeast Asia.
Vinai Kwankaew of the Phuket Agriculture Office said that pineapples have become the province’s most significant revenue-generating fruit. Phuket pineapples are known for their sweet flavor, tasty and yellow pulp, delicious aroma and crispy core.
About 40 farmers have been planting Phuket pineapples across a combined area of 1,800 rai, or about 4,500 acres, mainly in Thalang district as well as parts of Kathu district.
The average yield is about five tonnes from almost three acres of land, while the annual yield from the entire cultivation area is 8,000-9,000 tonnes. The pineapples are divided into five sizes with an average price of 12 baht per fruit. The prominent fruit has generated a total annual revenue of 80 million baht (US$ 2.7 million).
Phuket Deputy Governor Somkiat Sungkaosuthirak said the opening of the trading center was yet another move to help penetrate neighboring markets, given the commercial advantages anticipated in 2015 under the ASEAN Economic Community platform.
The development and promotion of Phuket pineapples must be strategically done with cooperation from all parties concerned, said Mr Somkiat.
He was confident that having the pineapple trading center would ensure consumers of the quality of the fruit.
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